Student applicants and scholarships sponsors now have a new online service where both sides can find a proper match. The site is operated by Primary Water, a nonprofit social enterprise that began last year as a student club with support from the Social Venture Research Organization of Seoul National University.
Primary Water’s donation matching system functions almost entirely through its website, ridding the usual hassle of offline paperwork, and lowering costs for Primary Water as well. Another special feature of the system is that it allows donors of small sums to pool their money and contribute to scholarship students selected by the site.
Students who seek financial support must fill out several questionnaires that are automatically stored on the site. Sponsors can then search for the exact person that they hope to support, and contact Primary Water via e-mail or wire donations to Primary Water’s account.
A member of Primary Water, Heo Jae-young (Seoul National University, 4), said, “The unique goal of its donors is what sets Primary Water apart from any other organization. Primary Water’s policy is that donors give a minimum 10,000 won to contribute, and donations do not have to be made regularly. This takes the pressure off of donors, results in more contributions, and widens the scope of possible contributors.” Donors can also make specifications in donating their support by one on one scholarship awards.
In September 2009, Primary Water awarded its first scholarship, about one hundred million won in total, which were given to five participating students from Seoul National University and two from other universities.
Primary Water is looking forward to register as nonprofit corporation by early next year and complete its Web site by creating a more thorough security system that removes any possibility of profile leaks.
“Our goal is to help people think more freely about donation, and make a Web site where not only Seoul National University students get help but all Korean students can get aids,” said Heo.